Copper in the Brew Pot...

Physics, chemistry and biology of brewing. The causes and the effects.

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Copper in the Brew Pot...

Postby jdbooth » Tue Mar 26, 2002 6:56 pm

I understand that adding a piece of copper to your brew pot adds minerals and/or nutrients to your wort that is helpfull for the yeast. Has anyone else heard this and if so does anyone actually do this?
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many place coppper but not for nutrients...

Postby bredmakr » Wed Mar 27, 2002 3:08 am

I do not yet understand the chemistry well enough to answer your question as far as it pertains to providing nutrients to wort that are beneficial to yeast. However, many homebrewers, including myself, do place a wort chiller, which is made from copper tubing, to the wort for the last 15 minutes of the boil to sterilize it and then cool the wort after the boil is complete. Any ion exchange that may occur between the wort and the copper is probably insignificant, but that is just a guess.
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Not for nutrients but...I use pennies...

Postby brewfeller » Wed Mar 27, 2002 1:18 pm

I use a few pennies in the boil to prevent boilover.
Works for me.
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Thermodynamics

Postby KBrau » Wed Mar 27, 2002 2:28 pm

I have never heard of using copper for its mineral properties and doubt it would add any appreciable flavor to your beer. Copper is used widely in brewing however for its thermodynamic properties. It is a very good conductor of heat which is why kettles and chillers are often made of copper.
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Brew Ware

Postby jdbooth » Wed Mar 27, 2002 7:26 pm

In Karl F. Lutzen and Mark Stevens book BREW WARE in chapter 2 "Building a Home Brewery", "Materials for Fabricating Equipment", "Copper" they write "Copper is used by homebrewers most often for chiller coils and racking tubes. Historically it's been the material of choice for use in brew kettles; but given their high costs, copper brew kettles are a rarity today. It's a good idea, however, to use some piece of copper equipment in the boil because it provides nutrients for the yeast. Some brewers have a small piece of copper tubing that they drop into the kettle for this purpose."

I wasn't sure how correct this was so I thought I would inquire as to how many of us actually do this or are aware of this (if in fact it is true.)
.
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Yeast Nutrient- Zinc

Postby stumpwater » Sun Mar 31, 2002 2:19 pm

I have read about the use of zinc as a yeast nutrient and of storing yeast in galvanized containers due to this, but I have never heard of the use of copper as such. Apparantely, the yeast will eat through the galvanization given enough time. In the modern home brew world, commercial yeast nutrient is available.
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